Yusuf Abdullah/ALOST

akoiki-passport2 – by Adesina O. Koiki
A Lot of Sports Talk editor-in-chief

WASHINGTON — After pacing the Villanova in scoring in the first half, guard Caleb Daniels stepped up his game even further in the second half to ensure that the Wildcats returned to the win column in conference play.

Any sort of win in conference play would be a welcome sight for Georgetown, whose latest lost may be the nadir of a former Big East leviathan that is looking to avoid further ignominy with each game going forward.

Daniels scored 11 of his 20 points in the second half, helping Villanova turn a tie score at halftime into a comfortable 73-57 for the Wildcats over the Hoyas inside Capital One Arena on Wednesday evening. Three other players scored in double figures for the Wildcats, with senior Brandon Slater and true freshman Mark Armstrong each scoring 14 points, who snapped a two-game losing streak while handing Georgetown its 25th consecutive defeat in Big East play, setting a new conference record for longest losing streak in league competition.

Tied at 35 at the half, the Wildcats went on a 22-8 run in the first 10 minutes of the second half to put the game away. Daniels nailed three three-pointers in the first 6:33 of the second half, with his last one giving Villanova a 48-41 lead. Along with the Wildcats’ long-range shooting, their defense turned the screws on the Hoyas, limiting Georgetown to just 22 points in the frame while holding the Hoyas to 6-of-29 shooting during the game’s final 20 minutes.

“Caleb is a very experienced played at this level, obviously,” Villanova head coach Kyle Neptune said. “Even more than scoring, his effort defensively and as a leader has been amazing for us this year. We know he can score. We’ve got a lot of talented guys that can score. When we defend this way, we can be really good.”

Jordan Riley led the Hoyas with 12 points while Akok Akok had 11 for Georgetown. Less than two years ago, former Hoyas great and current head coach Patrick Ewing were celebrating a magical run to a Big East Tournament championship at Madison Square Garden, which included a victory over top-seed Villanova in the quarterfinals. The championship victory, on March 13, 2021 against Creighton, is the last time Georgetown won a game against a Big East opponent, and a winless campaign last season ramped up the pressure on Ewing to win this year. Before the Hoyas can start winning consistently, they need to win a game, which has continued to be elusive as a once-proud program continues its current role as conference doormat.

“I’m a very prideful person, and Georgetown is a very prideful university,” Ewing said after the game, “and we don’t want to be associated with a losing streak, but it is what it is.”

*Editor’s note: Above the byline is the photo gallery from Wednesday evening’s game, with all photos taken by DC-area photographer Yusuf Abdullah. After clicking on the first photo to enlarge the picture, make sure to press the left and right arrow buttons to scroll through the rest of the pictures. There are 14 pictures in total.

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Tags : Big East ConferenceCollege BasketballGeorgetown HoyasVillanova Wildcats

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